Post | April 2024 | Volunteer Stories | 2 min read

Volunteer to support survivors

Written by Cambridge Rape Crisis Centre
A colourful wall with graffiti all over it. the main text reads 'my body my choice'

Cambridge Rape Crisis Centre has supported survivors of sexual violence and abuse since 1982, with volunteers playing crucial roles in the charity. From trustees to helpline, email and live chat volunteers, and fundraising volunteers, every contribution matters. We are thankful for the contributions from volunteers of all genders.

This story highlights our helpline, email, and live chat services, where our team of women volunteers provide emotional support to women and girls who have been subjected to sexual violence and abuse.

What it is like to volunteer with Cambridge Rape Crisis Centre?

On completion of our comprehensive training programme, women are supported to join our helpline, email and live chat by having opportunities to practice their skills, learn from other volunteers and have the ongoing support of our Volunteer Manager.

We know that supporting survivors of sexual violence and abuse can be challenging. This is why we require our volunteers to join Reflective Practice; a monthly peer support session facilitated by a qualified and experienced counsellor. Furthermore, our Volunteer Manager is regularly in touch with volunteers to send updates, to check in and to have calls as volunteers feel it’s needed, and to have one-to-ones. These are opportunities for volunteers to chat through anything and everything to do with their volunteering.

We are a feminist organisation and our work is underpinned by the values of equality, respect, transparency, choice and quality. We endeavour to make our volunteers feel appreciated, valued, heard and supported throughout their time with us.

Why volunteer with CRCC?

Being a helpline, email and live chat volunteer means that you are giving survivors their first chance to talk openly about their experiences of rape, sexual assault, childhood sexual abuse and other forms of violence. It also means that you are part of a community of amazing women who care deeply about being a support to survivors.

We know that, given that 1 in 4 women have been subjected to some form of sexual violence since they were 16 , some of our volunteers and applicants may be survivors but this isn’t one of our requirements. To learn more about who we are looking for check out our profile page on this site - you can find the link below.

What do our volunteers say of their training and volunteering experience?

I would like to express my gratitude for the opportunity to participate in the training and meet some truly amazing people. The training was incredibly valuable, and I learned a lot from you. I'll be forever grateful for this experience. Everyone I encountered at CRCC was welcoming, and it was enriching to be part of this organisation. The support among women, not just for survivors but for each other, was really empowering.

Woman training to be helpline, email and live chat volunteer.

Volunteering has changed my life and has changed how I interact with people and how I deal with people. It has been transformative and I am really thankful to CRCC for helping me grow.

Helpline and email volunteer.

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